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Posts Tagged ‘Regency Romance’

 

The figure. During the Regency being thin was not fashionable. It was the exact opposite. As you can see by the portraits, plump enough so that one’s collar bones were not showing was what one wanted to be. Curves were to be desired, not something to be ashamed of. Rounded faces were fashionable as well. Notice that many of the ladies had hints of double chins.

Naturally, there was a reason for that. If one was thin, it was assumed she could not afford enough to eat or that she was in poor health.

She must have good posture, something she would have been trained in with use of a board strapped to her back (backboard). Long stays also aided posture.

Her shoulders should slope. Her hips should be wide (this was thought to aid in childbirth).

 

This is Sally Jersey.

Emily Cowper

Mrs. Drummond-Burrell

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On my list of questions, is who were the famous designers of the Regency.

This will most likely come as a shock to you, but the fashionable designers during the Regency were devoted to clothing for gentlemen, not ladies. Gentlemen cared a great deal about their clothing.

A fashionably dressed gentleman patronized Weston, Stultz, Meyer, and Nugee for suits, Schweitzer & Davidson for coats, and Hobby for boots. I have read that it was immediately who made a man’s clothing by the cut and fit of the garments.

Stultz also made riding habits for ladies. Even ladies living out of London would send their old habits to him as a pattern for a new one.

#RegencyTrivia #HistoricalRomance #RegencyRomance

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There is a tendency to confuse these two completely different eras. The Regency followed immediately on the heels of the Georgian period, and was just about as freewheeling. The Victorian was, on the outside, buttoned up and prudish. Sex was, for all intents and purposes, pushed underground.

So here are just some of the difference between the times.

The garment a woman wore over her shift, or chemise was usually called stays, during the Regency. Although the term corset did exist. Yet there was huge difference in how they were made and what their purpose was. During the Regency stays were meant to smooth the lines for the high-waisted gown. They were not tight as there was no reason to accentuate the waist. There were two kinds, short and long. Many young ladies would have worn sort stays. Even when waists dropped between 1830 and 1830, the stays were not tightened as they were later on. Victorian corsets were made to make the waist smaller. They also made it much harder to breathe and many doctors considered them a health hazard. A whole movement grew up in protest of tight corsets.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The phrase, lay back and think of England, was Victorian. That’s because, after Freud came out with his theory that women didn’t need help having an orgasm, men no longer felt it necessary to make sure a woman enjoyed herself. During the Regency, it was a point of pride that a woman came. They also believed that a woman had to reach completion in order to conceive.

During the Regency, several well-known philosophers supported and encouraged women’s rights. Even though the laws didn’t change, women became, in many ways, more independent. Women as well as men took lovers. No one thought twice about a bluestocking setting up her own household after she had reached the proper age. Women of all sorts held salons where artists, writers, politicians, and other interesting people would gather. The Victorian era slammed the door shut on those blossoming rights and philosophies. It was not unusual for an unmarried woman (older spinsters and widows) to come under the boot of a man. It was also not uncommon for a woman to be placed in an institution for the mentally incompetent for disagreeing with a male member of her family too often or too strenuously.

During the Regency a widow was in mourning for a year for her husband. The first six months was full-mourning. She wore black. Close friends and family could, and, hopefully did, visit her. But she did not go to parties, dinners, etc. The second six months was half-mourning. She was allowed to wear gray and other subdued colors. But not lavender. As a color, it had not yet been invented. She could go out to subdued gatherings. Once her year of mourning was over, she was expected to rejoin Polite Society. Mourning for a child, or sibling was generally much shorter. I’ve heard times of six weeks for a baby, and up to three months for a grown sibling. Parents were generally about six months. During the Victorian era, morning for one’s husband was expanded to two years. One year of full-mourning, the next year of half-mourning. Other periods of mourning were also lengthened.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chaperoning of young unmarried ladies was significantly different as well. During the Regency, once a lady was betrothed, she and her soon-to-be husband were allowed to be alone for significant periods of time, anywhere, including closed carriages. In fact, it was expected they would anticipate their vows. Therefore, engagements were usually short and gentlemen could not cry off without ruining a lady’s reputation. If he decided he did not want to marry her after all, he had to find some way to make her jilt him. During the Victorian period, ladies were chaperoned up to the wedding day. They did not spend time alone with their betrothed until they were man and wife.

Only footmen and the coachman wore a uniform during the Regency. The wearing of uniforms by female servants was Victorian.

#RegencyTrivia #HistoricalRomance #ReadaRegency

 

 

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During the Regency, a coachman typically lost his last name. It was not at all unusual for a coachman to be called Firstname Coachman. The coachman’s job was to drive coaches (in contract to sporting carriages), such as the large traveling coach, a smaller town coach, a landau, or other coach. He also maintained all the carriages. He’d know what the tolls were from place to place so that he wouldn’t be cheated at a toll gate.

A coachman typically lived above the carriage house. That building could be either separate or attached to the stables.

Like footmen, a coachman would wear of uniform of sorts. However, their uniforms were not the flashy livery of a footman. It was more subdued and included a multi-caped greatcoat to protect him from the elements.

He sat on the box of the coach. If it was a long trip, he’d have an assistant with him and they’d take turns driving. He also had to know how to shoot, and would travel with a weapon of some sort near him.

#RegencyTrivia #HistoricalRomance #ReadaRegency

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Housekeepers are some of my favorite people. During the Regency, the housekeeper answered directly to the mistress of the house. Housekeepers, as did all Regency servants with the exception of footmen, wore her own clothing. Therefore it was very likely that she would receive cloth or an allowance in her contract.

She supervised all the female staff except the kitchen maids, nurse, and lady’s maid. Her duties included, but were not limited to, maintaining linens, china, stores of household items, having recipes for everything from cleaning products to medicinal items. Making sure the house was clean and well maintained. She also kept the household records. Like the butler, her room was in the cellar. She was the keeper of the keys for the household. If there is not house-steward, she would also be responsible for all domestic expenditures. In coordination with the cook, she was in charge of the purchasing of spices, and other food stores.

I found this list on Goodreads for books in which housekeepers play an important role https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/90885.Better_Homes_Housekeepers_in_Historical_Romance_

#RegencyTrivia #RegencyRomance #ReadaRegency #HistoricalRomance

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We’re moving on to servants. In England it was also middle class employment. Servants were integral in every gentry home. If at all possible, even the poorest would hire a maid of all work. It was a sign of status. In large houses, they were a necessity. The number of servants a household required depended upon the size the house, the number of people in the family, and their budget. For example, in Georgette Heyer’s Friday’s Child, the hero and heroine have eschewed the family town house and hire a small residence. The young couple decided that the following servants were necessary to their comfort: A valet, lady’s maid, cook, butler, footman or page-boy, coachman, two grooms, two maids, and a tiger.

 

The way servants were treated depended on the family. In households like the Duke of Devonshire’s, maids were in danger of being seduced by him. In other households, the housekeeper kept vigilance over the maids, and if any of them turned up pregnant and not planning to marry, they were let go without a reference. Or, maybe a footman or groom was responsible, and the couple were made to wed.

 

In many families, generations of servants served the family. In the country, it was not unusual for servants to be related and to be related to servants in other households. After all the landowners were the largest employers in the area.

 

How familiar the servants would be with the master or mistress also differed widely. If a peer, as a lad, had been put on his first pony by a young groom, that groom would more than likely feel as if he could speak his mind on some subjects when they were older. Or perhaps, as children, they stole tarts from the kitchen, or muddied the floors and had been chastised by the older servant. This ease of interaction was probably more common if the gentleman inherited his title at a fairly young age. On the other hand, some families had houses with interior tunnels for the servants’ use so that they couldn’t be seen. There were also accounts of a family whose finances took a downturn and the older servants remained with the family out of loyalty. So you see the relationships were as varied and complex as the people themselves.

Still, no matter how close a mistress or master was with servants (particularly to the nurse, for example, who may have raised them) never think they were “best friends.” Being a friend requires that both individuals have an equal social status. That was never the case with servants and their mistresses or masters who had the power to let them go.

Book recommendations: Friday’s Child (setting up house) and the Grand Sophy (fun interactions with servants) by Georgette Heyer. The Temptation of Lady Serena (fun interactions with servants) and You Never Forget Your First Earl, (setting up house) by me. Only a Mistress, by Jenna Jaxon. I’ve put out feelers for other books, but haven’t received any recommendations yet. Please feel free to add your own.

 

 

#RegencyTrivia #HistorialRomance

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Book #3 in The Worthingtons, It Started with a Kiss releases tomorrow, but the blog tour has already begun!

What is a young Worthington woman to do when the man of her dreams is not who she thinks he is? 

This season, all eyes are on the Earl of Worthington’s spirited, beautiful sister, Lady Louisa Vivers. Many gentlemen are vying for her attention in and around the ton. Yet, Louisa longs for someone who can take her beyond the ballroom—a man who is worldly, adventurous, and passionate. She won’t settle for just any suitor. She wants her true soul mate—and she’ll know him when she sees him.

Is Gideon, the Duke of Rothwell, him? The moment he and Louisa meet, they share a powerful attraction. Rides at sunrise and waltzes at dusk follow. Finally, Gideon can no longer resist the urge to embrace her, and Louisa is sure he will ask for her hand. But Gideon believes he is in no position to marry. The Rothwell estate has gone bankrupt, a scandal simmers in its wake, and he has nothing left to offer. Now, he must decide if he will let pride stand in the way of true love—or if he will risk everything, and let the lady decide for herself…

To celebrate the release I’m giving away 5 signed ARC!

Visit any or all of the sites below and enter!

If you don’t want to wait to see if you’ll win or you would rather have an ebook, here are the buy links!

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